by Minda Zetlin
Now that JD Edwards Labs has created its first new product, what’s next on the agenda? Smartwatches and augmented reality are on the Labs engineers’ radar. But that’s not all the team is working on. Some projects are “moon shots”—ideas that may or may not pan out farther in the future. Here’s a look at a few of those:
Last fall, at least two companies announced they were working on smart hard hats that could protect users’ heads on construction sites or at other hazardous locations, but also provide augmented reality images, audio- and video-recording capabilities, and a location beacon that would make the wearer easy to find.
“It’s a really purposeful wearable device,” says Gurbinder Bali, director of JD Edwards EnterpriseOne development at Oracle. It’s also a natural fit for Oracle’s many JD Edwards customers in the construction and oil industries. The Labs team is keeping an eye on smart hard hat development, with a view to possible integration between the devices and JD Edwards EnterpriseOne solutions.
Tracking apparel. RFID devices are becoming thinner and more long-lasting, Bali observes. “You could have something sewn into your uniform so it’s almost like a patch,” he says.
With devices like these, workers would no longer need to clock in and out—their uniforms themselves would identify their locations. Perhaps more important, in the event of an accident or other problem, the device would make employees easy to locate. Integration with Oracle’s JD Edwards solutions would allow managers to track these employees’ whereabouts on an interactive map and perhaps automatically capture ERP data.
Virtual 3-D holograms. Microsoft’s new prototype HoloLens is a headset that allows the wearer to see 3-D holographic images superimposed on the real world. Possible use cases are intriguing. “Who’s to say that charts and graphs have to be two-dimensional on a computer? They can be real-world objects made of photons,” Bali says.
A JD Edwards customer could look at a hologram of a complex piece of machinery with a malfunctioning part and pull out that individual part to make sure to replace it with the right item.
Photography by Shutterstock
Minda Zetlin is coauthor, with Bill Pfleging, of The Geek Gap: Why Business and Technology Professionals Don’t Understand Each Other and Why They Need Each Other to Survive (Prometheus Books, 2006).